The Kresge Eye Institute (KEI) will host a reception at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 6 to celebrate the unveiling of a new mosaic art mural in its third floor pediatric waiting room.
The installation, “Rainbow Man,” is a visually striking 13 feet wide by 7 feet tall and is made of more than 1,000 hand-sculpted clay pieces. The installation features 3-D details that provide low-vision or visually impaired children and adults an opportunity to experience art by touch. One section also features a Helen Keller quote in Braille type.
“Kresge Eye Institute is more than just the home of excellent eye care,” said Mark Juzych, director of KEI and chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology at Wayne State University School of Medicine. “Our physicians and staff understand that patients are not just appointments; each is a unique individual with special needs and deserves our best from the moment they come in. We now have a unique space where visually impaired young people can use their sense of touch to interact with a work of art through an installation made especially for them. It’s a good example of the way we at Kresge care for the whole person.”
The mural was created by Royal Oak artist Laurie Eisenhardt with funding from the Sara Williams Parish Foundation. The project was completed with volunteers from Art & Soul, a mission of Birmingham First United Methodist Church in cooperation with the Networking, Organizing and Advocating for the Homeless program at Detroit’s Central United Methodist Church. Art & Soul is designed to inspire pride and purpose in the homeless through self-expressive art. Many Art & Soul members are also patients at Kresge.
“The inspiring collaboration with the folks at Art & Soul on ideas for the imagery led to the development of Rainbow Man,” said Eisenhardt. “Two main considerations in designing the mosaic were planning spaces in the piece that many people with varying skill levels could contribute to and, of course, the design challenge to create art that would be accessible for the visually impaired.”
The pediatric waiting area where the mural will be installed is called “Christopher’s Corner” to honor a former patient, Christopher Kight, who lost sight in one eye as a result of an injury as an infant. Christopher is now 11 years old and lives in Canton with his family.
“A few years ago, we were able to make a small donation and direct some additional funding to Kresge,” said Jackie Kight, Christopher’s mom. “This helped create a waiting area for the children. When Christopher was being treated, I noticed that there was not a space for the children to play quietly while they waited. Christopher’s Corner was our contribution to give back to Kresge and provide a place for the kids to wait to see the wonderful doctors.”
The Kresge Eye Institute is located at 4717 St. Antoine St. in Detroit.
Kresge Eye Institute (KEI) is one of the nation’s leading medical centers for the preservation of sight and has an international reputation for its pioneering eye research program. KEI is dedicated to excellence in patient care, eye research and medical education. A part of Wayne State University since 1966, the institute is an integral part of the Wayne State University School of Medicine and Wayne State University Physician Group. Kresge physicians specialize in all areas of ophthalmology, including cataracts, comprehensive ophthalmology, cornea and external disease, glaucoma, neuro-ophthalmology, ophthalmic plastic surgery, ophthalmic trauma, pediatric ophthalmology and vitreoretinal diseases and surgery. Kresge also offers optometry and optical services. To learn more about Kresge Eye Institute, visit www.kresgeeye.org or call 313-577-8900.
Wayne State University Physician Group (WSUPG) is the second-largest nonprofit multi-specialty physician practice group in southeast Michigan, with more than 2,000 affiliated physicians providing primary and specialty care. Each day our doctors diagnose and treat some of the most complex medical cases in the state. As faculty members at the top-rated Wayne State University School of Medicine, our doctors are at the forefront of medical science. To make an appointment at one of our more than 180 locations call 877-WSU-DOCS (877-978-3627) or visit www.upgdocs.org. To connect with us online, visit www.facebook.com/WSUPGDocs or follow WSUPGDocs on Twitter at @WSUPGDocs.